Google promises EU Fitbit data will not be used for furthering ad business post-acquisition
In November last year, Google's intention to buy Fitbit for $2.1 billion emerged. The fitness-tracking device maker is the fifth-largest player in the wearables market per estimates but it is struggling to keep up in the face of rising competition from Apple, Xiaomi, Samsung, and Huawei.
Google, on the other hand, is keen on bolstering its hardware unit which currently comprises smartphones, tablets, notebooks, and smart speakers.
Advocacy groups had expressed their concerns about the deal, arguing that it would give Google access to sensitive data such as user's fitness activity and hear rates. Rivals have also been surveyed to determine if the deal has the potential to thwart competition.
A week ago, it was reported that Google could avoid a full-blown EU antitrust investigation into the acquisition if its pledges not to use data from Fitbit's hardware.
The deadline for Google to make this commitment was July 13 and if it hadn't taken up the offer, it would have resulted in an investigation spanning four months.
The European Commission will reportedly gather feedback from Google's rivals and users before approving the deal. If serious concerns are raised, the trading bloc might ask for more concessions or open a months-long investigation into the matter.